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Ancelotti: “I don’t like playing Atlético Madrid”

The Italian spoke before the Spanish Super Cup semi-final

Real Madrid Training Session Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images

Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti spoke ahead of the Spanish Super Cup and the first of three Madrid derbies against Atlético Madrid in the coming weeks. On that topic, the Italian said, “the schedule is what it is. We will play Atlético Madrid. Personally, I don’t like playing Atlético Madrid, is always complicated because they are a great team so we have to play. I’m sure they will be thinking the same. They are two strong teams, and this is the calendar, so I’m sure fans from both teams will enjoy.”

Ancelotti on the last meeting with Atlético

“The last time we played Atlético it hurt us. I think we’ve fixed that. But tomorrow, we will need to show a better version of ourselves than in the first game of the season against Atlético Madrid.”

Ancelotti on the game against Atlético

“It’s an important match. We will try to do our best to win. The team is in good shape, we are eager and excited. I think we can play a good game considering that Atletico hurt us. Atlético is a team that competes, fights and has quality. It’s going to be a competitive match.”

Ancelotti on the goalkeeping situation

“One of the two will play tomorrow. I don’t want to say who today.”

Ancelotti on Fede Valverde’s versatility

“He’s a complete player. He can play football in many ways. As a winger, like when we won the Champions League, or as a pivot like he has lately. He’s very complete, and he can play in different ways in the same game, which is very unusual. I think he can still improve when he has more character and personality, he is very humble and strong but having some arrogance sometimes might make him stronger as a character.”

Ancelotti on Diego Simeone

“I’m very happy in the atmosphere at the club now. From outside, it seems that Simeone is very happy at Atlético Madrid. He seems the ideal profile, otherwise you wouldn’t stay there so long.”

Ancelotti on his relationship with Simeone

“It’s a relationship of respect. We talk a lot. We’ve faced each other many times, he scored against my team once in Lazio vs Juventus in Turin. We respect one another. I think we’re neighbours and we see each other sometimes.”

Ancelotti on listening to VAR audios post-match

“I think VAR can be improved. It has to be a support tool for the referee, the one who has to take the decision must be the referee. I think hearing the communication might help the referee, for us, it doesn’t change anything.”

Ancelotti on Kroos-Valverde as a double pivot

“That couple could be broken up with Tchouameni or Camavinga, but they have played many games.”

Ancelotti on Barcelona’s “new era” starting with last year’s Super Cup

“I don’t know, all I know is that Barcelona have competed in the past, they are competing now in the domestic league, in the Champions League, in the Super Cup. They always have been and always will be.”

Ancelotti on Antonio Rüdiger

“He’s a very focused and concentrated defender. He’s very strong in the air. He has experience from England, Italy, and he has good positioning, character and seriousness. He’s a pessimistic player. He always thinks something bad could happen, so he’s very focused on the game.”

Ancelotti on if he’s had an offer from Saudi Arabia

“It’s not true, they must have forgotten me.”

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